How to Sell Effectively Online and Beat the Competition
Beat your competition with these 7 Simple and Powerful Tips to help you sell effectively online by eliminating customer hurdles and promoting customer loyalty.
Selling products online isn’t really a new thing anymore. In fact, selling online has become the method of choice for many businesses selling direct to retail customers. With so many businesses online now, the real problem is how to sell effectively to beat the competition?
For small businesses this can be a massive hurdle starting with issues ranging from;
- How is your online store different from everyone else’s?
- If you sell through a platform, such as Amazon, what are you doing to make you unique?
- What sales channels should you use?
- How do you carve out a slice of the pie when you’re going head to head with HUGE retailers?
This guide will show you how to stand out and sell effectively online to beat that competition.
Be Upfront and Have Integrity
It goes without saying that you should aim to build a long-term brand, rather than chasing short-term, ‘immediate’ profits. Let your customers in on everything they need to know regarding your product, and make that information very easily accessible. Many companies are vague about their pricing, terms of service, features and shipping. Avoid these practices, as they create doubt and confusion (and ultimately frustration!) in the customer’s mind.
Make complete honesty part of your brand. People are far more willing to recommend a company they trust to their family and friends, than a company with questionable ethics. We’ll get more into that later in the article.
Create a Sense of Urgency
To effectively sell your product online, there has to be a compelling reason to buy. There are many other companies and responsibilities fighting for your customer’s attention – make it clear why a potential customer should take action while the product is in front of them. A great example of this is limited time offers, such as “buy one get one free” that last only a few days. It gives the customer a reason to purchase. When you start running low on a product that is going to be discontinued, announce it and let customers know there aren’t many left. Giving customers that urgent sense can tip the scales on their decision on whether or not to buy your product.
Remove the Risk
First time buyers can sometimes be cautious of giving out their credit card information. Offering a money back guarantee for your products is a great way to help customers feel secure in their purchase. This may prompt them to buy when they otherwise wouldn’t! If you have a high quality product, few people are likely to make a refund request. Issuing a refund is much preferred over having someone make a charge back request, because it keeps you out of trouble with the credit card processor or the platform you’re selling your goods on. The increase in sales will make up for the smaller inconvenience that an occasional refund may cost you.
Use the Power of Demonstration
Create visual aids to help the customer picture how the product helps them. Take the time to create quality photos that showcase the benefits of your product. An even stronger idea is to use videos to allow the customer to see it in action. Give the customers plenty of photos and videos to show the different textures and angles of what you’re selling and how it’s used. If a picture speaks one thousand words, then imagine how much a video says about your product! If done professionally, you can really make your product stand out. Beyond pictures and video, sending direct mail promoting a product you’re selling online is an effective way to make people aware of your website and look you up. If someone is able to physically hold a product in their hands, they are more likely to engage with it and follow through.
Capture Those Emails!
Let’s say you just made a sale.
The customer now has what he or she was looking for, and will likely be satisfied with the service and possibly not come back to your site.
So what’s the best way to stay in contact?
By having a customer sign in with a personal email as part of the check out process, you allow customers to decide if they want the option of a newsletter for possible deals or new products in the future. This will allow you to create a fan-base to market to again through email. Everything you sell to an existing customer provides you with a much higher profit margin than first time buyers that found you through paid advertising. Don’t forget about your past buyers – keep them up to date!
Have Outstanding Follow-Through
It is rare to find a company that consistently delivers on its promises. Word of mouth is a powerful byproduct of good service. The positive word of mouth advertising your customers provide will be much more likely to come if your service is excellent. Advertising doesn’t even compare to a raving recommendation from a friend or family member.
Amazon’s reputation for excellent customer service is why it is such a dominant online business. Many customers they gain turn into multiple customers through referrals. Have you ordered a product that you were excited about, but the service was so bad you ended up regretting buying it in the first place? Poor service can bring the joy of purchasing a desired product down, and even if your product is good, excess hassle and frustration can keep customers from buying from you in the future.
Treat Success As a Daily Process
All the knowledge in the world means nothing until you put it into action. Building the foundations of your business is possible when you take it one step at a time. These seven principles of selling effectively online will help you compete in an online world and help keep your name in the mind of your customers. Get started today to begin transforming your business.